For a lot of basketball fans, the NBA offseason is one of the most exciting times of the year. While the regular season brings betting on Bodog Canada on the games, and there is no action to enjoy in the summer, the offseason brings massive changes to the league. The NBA is a league where there is a ton of player movement every summer that shakes up the league and changes the odds for teams to win.
Teams can choose to either sign players through free agency or acquire them via trade. While the free agency market this year is shallow, there are numerous exciting players on the trade market that could give teams the push they need to become champion contenders. Let’s look at who they are.
Damian Lillard is considered the NBA’s most loyal superstar, as he has stuck with the Portland Trail Blazers despite their ability to put a real contender around him. It seems as if his patience is finally wearing thin. The general consensus around the league is that this might be the year Lillard becomes available.
The Blazers hold the 3rd pick in the draft and could move into a full rebuild, moving Lillard to a contender. If so, he is one of the best scoring guards in the league, fresh off averaging 32.2 points per game last season. He would be an exceptional fit on the Miami Heat or Milwaukee Bucks.
Zion Williamson was supposed to be the next NBA legend after being selected first overall out of Duke to much fanfare. While he has been exceptional when he has been on the court, staying healthy has been a huge problem. He has only played more than 29 games once in the potential four seasons he’s been in the league.
With rumors of negative relationships with the New Orleans Pelicans franchise, they might offload him. He would get the Pelicans a haul because Williamson still has the raw potential to be one of the best in the game.
When Paul George and Kawhi Leonard teamed up on the Los Angeles Clippers, it was supposed to yield instant contender status. While they’ve been great when healthy, injuries have undone the team.
There are rumors George could be available on the market this offseason. If so, he would be a great get for many teams. George is a three-level scorer, a strong passer, and a solid defender. When healthy, he is one of the top wings in the game. A team like the Heat, Hawks, or Trail Blazers would make sense on paper.
The Chicago Bulls are far away from contender status yet seem content to hold on to their top pieces. However, there are rumors that won’t be the case any longer and that they’ll trade Zach LaVine and move into a rebuild.
LaVine is an elite scoring guard and explosive dunker with a great three-point shot. He could help a team that struggles to generate offense become stronger, and he would fit well alongside Jimmy Butler in Miami, with Jalen Brunson in New York, or leading the Brooklyn Nets. There are concerns about the Bulls’ asking price.
Deandre Ayton seems like a certainty to be traded. The former first-overall pick is on an expensive contract paying him $30+ million per year, and after the Suns just traded for Bradley Beal, they need to find a way to spread that money to multiple players.
There is a significant likelihood Ayton will be shipped to get multiple players or open cap space. Ayton has been a strong interior force in his career, but star status has eluded Ayton. Could he find it elsewhere?